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Int J Cancer. 1989 Sep 15;44(3):445-8.

Sera of children with renal tumours contain low-molecular-mass hyaluronic acid.

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Christie Hospital, Manchester, UK.


The molecular mass of hyaluronic acid (HA) rather than its serum concentration alone may be a hallmark of certain types of malignancy. A radiometric assay was used to measure HA levels in 35 children with renal tumours [33 Wilms' tumours and 2 bone metastasizing renal tumours of childhood (BMRTC)] and 20 normal siblings of children with cancer. The HA level in the sera of normal children was barely detectable and had a molecular mass of 1-5 x 10(5). In both Wilms' and BMRTC patients, very high levels of HA were found in preoperative serum samples; these fell dramatically following surgical excision of the tumours. A novel finding of our study was the presence of low-molecular-mass HA (similar to the angiogenic fragments of HA) in the sera of BMRTC patients. In contrast, high-molecular-mass HA (which is not angiogenic) was found in the sera of Wilms' patients (2 x 10(6) kDa). Following surgery in BMRTC patients, not only did serum HA levels fall to a value within normal ranges, but also the HA which remained was of high molecular mass.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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